LAW 1100 - Introduction to Law

North Terrace Campus - Semester 1 - 2016

An introduction to the Australian legal system including the role of the Constitution, parliaments and courts. An Introduction to the basic rules of contract, the tort of negligence, liability for unsafe products, the consequences of misleading conduct, the criminal process and the law relating to property ownership (including intellectual property).

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code LAW 1100
    Course Introduction to Law
    Coordinating Unit Adelaide Law School
    Term Semester 1
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 3 hours per week
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange N
    Incompatible LAW1501 Foundations of Law
    Restrictions Not available for LLB students
    Course Description An introduction to the Australian legal system including the role of the Constitution, parliaments and courts. An Introduction to the basic rules of contract, the tort of negligence, liability for unsafe products, the consequences of misleading conduct, the criminal process and the law relating to property ownership (including intellectual property).
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: David Moon

    Telephone 831 39166

    This role is solely administrative
    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    A student successfully completing the course will be able to:

    1. Explain the history and contemporary features of the Australian legal system, including its key institutions, doctrines and principles;

    2. Understand the fundamental legal rules and principles relevant to the selected areas of the law, and apply these to novel scenarios;

    3. Work both independently and as part of a group to critically analyse the law of Australian including its institutions, stakeholders, principles, operation and theoretical bases.
    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Deep discipline knowledge
    • informed and infused by cutting edge research, scaffolded throughout their program of studies
    • acquired from personal interaction with research active educators, from year 1
    • accredited or validated against national or international standards (for relevant programs)
    1, 2, 3
    Critical thinking and problem solving
    • steeped in research methods and rigor
    • based on empirical evidence and the scientific approach to knowledge development
    • demonstrated through appropriate and relevant assessment
    2, 3
    Teamwork and communication skills
    • developed from, with, and via the SGDE
    • honed through assessment and practice throughout the program of studies
    • encouraged and valued in all aspects of learning
    2, 3
    Career and leadership readiness
    • technology savvy
    • professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
    • forward thinking and well informed
    • tested and validated by work based experiences
    2, 3
    Intercultural and ethical competency
    • adept at operating in other cultures
    • comfortable with different nationalities and social contexts
    • Able to determine and contribute to desirable social outcomes
    • demonstrated by study abroad or with an understanding of indigenous knowledges
    1, 3
    Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
    • a capacity for self-reflection and a willingness to engage in self-appraisal
    • open to objective and constructive feedback from supervisors and peers
    • able to negotiate difficult social situations, defuse conflict and engage positively in purposeful debate
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    Reading / Texts

    The required readings (the Course Materials) for this course are available either online on MyUni.
    Recommended Resources

    Given the breadth of content in this course, there is no one text or collection of texts which adequately covers all of the material. Moreover, much of the content is legal in nature and the principal texts in each area are designed for scholars and students of the law. However, should you require assistance with any particular area of the law as covered in the course, there are plenty of useful resources available in the Law Library and the staff there would be more than willing to assist you in this regard. You are also very welcome to consult your teachers for guidance on particular texts that might be of use to help deepen your understanding of particular legal concepts.
    Online Learning
    The MyUni course page for this course can be accessed at

    Besides this Course Profile and the Study Guide, students can use MyUni to access copies of the PowerPoint slides used in lectures, recordings of lectures, assessment tasks and other course materials. Students are expected to check MyUni regularly to keep up to date with these materials and additional learning resources throughout the course.

    There is also a Discussion Board for the course on MyUni. This has been set up as a way of enabling students enrolled in the course to communicate with one another. Students may use it to engage in general discussion about the themes of the course, or to post questions that they are hoping some other student can answer. But if their question is really to one of the teachers in the course, they should email that teacher directly.
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    Students in this course are expected to attend all lectures throughout the semester plus one one-hour seminar each week.

    The lectures will offer an overview of the topics covered in the course, according to the schedule set out in 4.3 below. Each lecture will include opportunities for students to ask questions on the issues covered and engage in the discussion.

    The seminars involve small group discussion of selected issues covered in the course and are designed to encourage active engagement with the themes of the course. The seminars are meant to be more of a guided, open forum for discussion and will help students to think critically about the many significant issues addressed throughout the course. The questions assigned for each seminar will assist in providing some direction for this discussion.

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    For 3-unit courses, students are expected to devote an average of 12 hours per week to their studies in it, including classes. Students in this course are expected to attend all lectures throughout the semester plus one one-hour seminar each week.

    The assigned readings provide not only a context for the material covered in the lectures but for the seminars. The seminar questions will, with the odd exception, be based upon the assigned reading material.

    Copies of PowerPoint presentation slides used in the lectures will be made available on MyUni ahead of each lecture. These provide a basic outline of the points covered, though they should not be seen as a substitute for attendance or for the assigned readings. Some students may find it useful to print the slides out in advance of the relevant lectures and use them as a basis for taking notes.

    The lectures are intended to provide an overview of the relevant themes and principles and to put them into context. They are not meant to tell students everything they need to know, but to serve as a guide for their own study. That study should involve, at the very least, reading through the material in the Study Guide and any other directed readings, and preparation of answers to the questions set for seminars.
    Learning Activities Summary

    No information currently available.

  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    Week Dates Lecture Topic Seminar topic
    Week 1 February 29 - March 4 Legal History and the Australian Legal System No seminar
    Week 2 March 7 -11
    The Lawmaking Process

    Legal History and the Australian Legal

    Week 3 March 14-18 Law in the Media The Lawmaking Process

    Week 4 March 21-25 Courts and the Common Law
    Law in the Media

    Week 5 March 28-
    April 1
    Criminal Law and Procedure

    Courts and the Common Law

    Week 6 April 4-8
    Legal Theory

    Criminal Law and Procedure

    MEDIA ANALYSIS DUE 8 APRIL 2016 at 5pm
    Week 7 April 25-29 Tort of Negligence

    Legal Theory
    Week 8 May 2-6 Contract Law Tort of Negligence

    Week 9 May 9-13 Misleading Conduct and Liability for Unsafe Products


    Week 10 May 16-20 Property Law

    Week 11 May 23-27 Law, Psychology and Popular Culture


    Week 12 May 30- June 3 Future Directions in Law Contract Law

    Week 13 June 6-10 NO LECTURE Law, Psychology and Popular Culture

    SWOT June 13-17


    RESEARCH ESSAY DUE 17/6 2016 at 5pm
    Assessment Related Requirements
    Each piece of assessment is compulsory. None of the assessment is redeemable.

    Assessment Task Task Type Individual or Group Redeemable Due Weighting Learning Outcome
    Media Analysis Summative Individual No

    8/04/2016 at 5pm

    20 1-3
    Presentation Summative Individual No Week beginning

    Week beginning

    Week beginning
    20 1-3
    Research Essay Summative Individual No 17/06/2016 at 5pm 60 1-3

    Assessment Detail
    1. Media Analysis (20%)

    Due Date: The Media Analysis must be submitted on Friday 8 April 2016 at 5:00pm.
    Details: This exercise will require students to find a law-related article from a media source (print or online) and discuss the nature and public relevance of the topic, as well as the techniques used by the author in reporting the subject matter. Students will be required to address issues such as: the nature of the legal subject matter and how the author has tailored his or her approach to reporting a law-related matter; ethical aspects of the report, including whether or not it is likely to cause an emotional response
    amongst members of society; the ‘suitability’ of the subject for publication in the particular forum and manner chosen; the reported implications (if any) for the Australian legal system. Papers must not exceed 1000 words in length (see below for penalties applicable to word count). Further instructions regarding the Media Analysis will be contained in the question paper.

    2.  In-class Presentation (20%)

    Due Date: Presentations will be held over three weeks of seminars in the weeks beginning Monday 9 May 2016. 
    Details: The presentation exercise will require students to give a short presentation on one of the topic questions provided. The questions will relate to material covered in Weeks 1-5. Topics and presentation specifics will be released in week 2. Maximum allowable time for each presentation is 5 minutes (this requires each presentation to be very consise). Each presentation should be structured in the following way: key points, arguments and conclusion. Each student will be provided with oral feedback and written feedback. 

    3. Research Essay (60%)

    Due Date: The Research Essay must be completed by Friday 17 June 2016 at 5:00pm.
    Details: The research essay will allow students to write a larger piece on one of the questions provided and relating to the material covered in the course. Students will be required to undertake research so as to present an informed and well-rounded piece of writing that demonstrates critical thought and reflection. Papers must not exceed 2500 words in length (see below for penalties applicable to word count). Research Essay questions will be released in Week 5.

    1. Students must retain a copy of all assignments submitted.
    2. To gain a pass, students must submit each part of the assessment.
    3. All assignments must be submitted via 'Turn-It-In' on MyUni. Details for electronic submission through Turnitin will be provided with the assignment instructions. By submitting your assignment you are agreeing to the following: (a) I declare that all material in this assessment is my own work except where there is clear acknowledgement and reference to the work of others. (b) I have read the Policy on Cheating in Examinations and Related Forms of Assessment. I have also read the University's Plagiarism Policy.I give permission for my assessment work to be reproduced and submitted to other academic staff for the purposes of assessment and to be copied, submitted and retained in a form suitable for electronic checking of plagiarism.
    4. Late Submission: Where an assignment is submitted after the due date and without an extension, penalties of 5% of the total mark possible will be deducted for every 24 hours or part thereof that it is late, including each day on a weekend. For example, an essay graded 63% will have 5% deducted if it is one hour late, for a final grade of 58%, 10% if it is 25 hours late, etc.  This penalty may be increased where the assignment is to be completed in a period of less than a week. 
    5. Word Length: Assignments which exceed the allocated length (word length or page limit) will be subject to a penalty of 5% of total marks possible per 100 words or part thereof (i.e. with a word limit of 3,000, an essay graded 63% will have 5% deducted if it is 3001 words long, for a final grade of 58%, 10% if it is 3101 words long, etc). Words are calculated including all footnotes and headings within the text but excluding cover page information, separate bibliography or list of sources. Quotations and all referencing information are included in the word count. If the word limit is seriously misstated, this may be regarded as academic dishonesty.
    6. Extensions: Requests for extensions must be made via email to the course coordinator. Extensions will be granted only for unexpected illness, hardship or on compassionate grounds in accordance with University Policy. Work commitments, travel, holidays or sporting engagements are not unexpected circumstances.
    7. Style of written work: All written work in the Law school is required to comply with the approved Law School style guide, the Australian Guide to Legal Citation. However, on account of the fact that this topic is taught into non-law disciplines, Harvard or APA referencing will also be accepted.
    8. Turnaround time: The interim assignment for this course will be returned to students within 3 weeks of the submission date. Group feedback, together with written, individual feedback will be provided, from which students can learn from in the final assignment. The final assignment will be returned to students within 4 weeks of the submission date with written individual feedback. Students will be notified by email when assignments are ready for collection from the Law School Front Office.
    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy ( course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

  • Student Support
    The University Writing Centre provides academic learning and language development services and resources for local, international, undergraduate and postgraduate coursework students enrolled at the University of Adelaide.

    Practical advice and strategies for students to master reading, writing, note-taking, time management, oral presentation skills, referencing techniques and exam preparation for success at university through seminars, workshops and individual consultations.

    For more information please check out the Writing Centre website at  

    Lex Salus Program

    Lex Salus was founded in 2013 by Adelaide Law School Wellbeing officers Ms Corinne Walding, Ms Kellie Toole and Dr Mark Giancaspro. Lex Salus is an initiative of the Adelaide Law School aimed at raising law student awareness of the importance of mental, physical and nutritional health across all year levels of the degree, and of the various counselling, disability and equity services both within and outside the University that can provide help. Research shows that law students, both in Australia and in many jurisdictions around the world, experience the highest levels of stress, anxiety and depression out of any other discipline. Many do not get enough sleep, maintain a healthy diet or achieve a realistic work/life balance. Making matters worse, they are unwilling or afraid to speak up for fear of feeling 'weak' or because of the negative stigma that attaches to seeking help. Lex Salus is dedicated to tackling these problems head-on.

    Counselling Service

    The University Counselling Service provides a free and confidential service to all enrolled students. We encourage you to contact the Counselling service on 8313 5663 to make an appointment to deal with any issues that may be affecting your study and life. More information is available at  

  • Policies & Guidelines

    This section contains links to relevant assessment-related policies and guidelines - all university policies.

    Further information regarding the Law School Policies and Procedures in relation to Supplementary Assessment, Extensions, and remarks can be found at:

    Plagiarism and other forms of cheating

    Plagiarism is a serious act of academic misconduct. All students must be familiar with the Adelaide Law School Enrolment Guide, and should note in particular the sections relating to plagiarism, grievance procedures and academic conduct within the Law School and the University.

    Plagiarism is a serious matter and is treated as such by the Law School and the University. Please be aware that “academic dishonesty” (which goes beyond plagiarism) can be a ground for a refusal by the Supreme Court of South Australia to refuse to admit a person to practice as a legal practitioner in South Australia.

    Academic honesty is an essential aspect of ethical and honest behaviour, which is central to the practice of the law and an understanding of what it is to be a lawyer.
  • Fraud Awareness

    Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.

The University of Adelaide is committed to regular reviews of the courses and programs it offers to students. The University of Adelaide therefore reserves the right to discontinue or vary programs and courses without notice. Please read the important information contained in the disclaimer.